This setting lets you change the way you view articles. You can choose to have articles open in a dialog window, a new tab, or directly in the same window.
Open in Dialog
Open in New Tab
Open in same window

Journal of Economic Perspectives: Vol. 23 No. 2 (Spring 2009)

Expand

Quick Tools:

Print Article Summary
Export Citation
Sign up for Email Alerts Follow us on Twitter

Explore:

JEP - All Issues


Retrospectives: Who Said "Debauch the Currency": Keynes or Lenin?

Article Citation

White, Michael V., and Kurt Schuler. 2009. "Retrospectives: Who Said "Debauch the Currency": Keynes or Lenin?" Journal of Economic Perspectives, 23(2): 213-22.

DOI: 10.1257/jep.23.2.213

Abstract

One frequently quoted passage from the work of John Maynard Keynes is that "the best way to destroy the capitalist system [is] to debauch the currency." The passage, attributed to Vladimir Illyich Lenin, appears in Keynes' book The Economic Consequences of the Peace, which became an international bestseller when it was published in 1919. Economic historian Frank W. Fetter and others have expressed doubt that Keynes was really quoting Lenin because they found no such statement in Lenin's collected published writings. Fetter suggested that Keynes based his remark on stories about what the Soviets were supposed to be saying that he heard at the Paris peace conference of 1919. It is now possible to show that Keynes based his remark on a report of an interview with Lenin published by London and New York newspapers in April 1919. Keynes' discussion of inflation in the Economic Consequences can then be read as an extended commentary on the remarks attributed to Lenin in the interview. While the report of the interview was not reprinted after 1919, it will be also shown here that Lenin responded to Keynes in a speech that was reprinted in his Collected Works.

Article Full-Text Access

Full-text Article (Complimentary)

Authors

White, Michael V. (Monash U)
Schuler, Kurt (US Department of the Treasury)

JEL Classifications

B13: History of Thought: Neoclassical through 1925 (includes Austrian, Marshallian, Walrasian)
B14: History of Thought through 1925: Socialist; Marxist
B31: History of Thought: Individuals

Comments

View Comments on This Article (0) | Login to post a comment


Journal of Economic Perspectives


Quick Tools:

Sign up for Email Alerts

Follow us on Twitter

Subscription Information
(Institutional Administrator Access)

Explore:

JEP - All Issues

Virtual Field Journals


AEA Member Login:


AEAweb | AEA Journals | Contact Us